Any passerby can sit and read the books of their choice from the roadside library.
Roadside shops are essential for travellers who stop their cars and bikes to buy stuff. But roadside library? Could you ever imagine that one day you would get out of your vehicle to read a book! Ngurang Meena has turned this imagination into reality by setting up a free roadside library in Arunachal Pradesh. This 30-year-old, with her efforts and money, put a standing wooden shelf with books in Nirjuli town of the Papum Pare district of Arunachal Pradesh.
How did it start?
While sharing her thoughts behind this initiative, Ms. Meena told the Times of India that wine shops and bars are easily accessible in her town but libraries are not. She also emphasized with the advent of new media, technology is keeping the young generation away from the habit of reading. And, to reinforce the idea of reading through physical books in children and young people, she thought of establishing a roadside library in Arunachal Pradesh.
The educator and social activist also shared that she saw a street library in Mizoram on her Facebook feed that inspired her to open the “self-help library”. She, then, spent ten thousand rupees on purchasing books and another ten thousand on buying paint, wood, and tin sheets for the standing shelf.
Library of the people and for the people
Ms. Meena belongs to a tribal community and spent her childhood in deprivation of books and libraries. She desires to bring a change in her community by making education available to them. The idea of opening a free roadside library, she feels, was essential to ensure the easy and free accessibility of books to people. For children, she uses a different technique of offering them chocolates in return for reading books.
So, the next time you are travelling in Arunachal Pradesh, you know where to quench your thirst for reading.